The place of interests in the resume
In order to apply for a job offer, several sections are necessary for the writing of a curriculum vitae: cover letter, academic background, professional background, technical skills, soft skills, and interests. In this article, we provide examples of how to present your academic background and professional experience. You will find an article on the candidate's guide dedicated to catch phrases in resume and another one on the skills. Today, we're focusing on interests. Which ones should be highlighted when writing a resume? How to present them? Why include them when creating a resume?
I have no interests
No matter how hard you look, how much you dig... You can't find any interests? Not to us! Surely you have at least one little thing that thrills you, that helps you relax or clear your mind in your life, right? 😊 Here are some questions to help you find your interests:
What do you do when you're bored? What do you do when you're not working? What could you spend hours on and lose track of time? What makes you feel good (outside of work)? What do you hate doing in your free time and what would you rather do instead?
If not, we'll give you some examples of interests in the rest of this article !
Why should I mention my interests in my resume?
When looking for a job, your resume is usually a document that presents brief but concise personal information that is intended to give the recruiter an idea of your qualifications, skills and personality. To make a resume, you can also add your interests to tell recruiters what you like to do in your free time. The activities you do for fun say a lot about your tastes, pleasures and passions. This is particularly useful for recruiters when applying for a student job or a first job, when the student or the young graduate has little experience!
➡️ For example, if you have been playing handball for 10 years, what does this activity say about you?
You have a certain consistency and regularity because you have been involved in this sport for many years. You may like to see your progress in one area. You are certainly a team player. You are not afraid of competition.
➡️ If you've been singing in a choir for three years?
You may be comfortable expressing yourself in front of an audience, you are a team player, and you are cohesive.
➡️ If you like playing chess?
You like strategy, reflection and analysis.
➡️ If you grow an organic vegetable garden?
You like to spend time outside, you like nature, you are not afraid to put your hands in the ground, you are concerned about the preservation of the environment and good eating habits.
Of course, all these examples are just guesses, but you get the idea? Behind your interests are skills that the person reading your resume will try to deduce.
What interests should be emphasized ?
Avoiding certain interests
Be careful, when writing a resume, some hobbies could be detrimental to you, or at least the way you present them.
➡️ Here is an example:
- Playing video games
- Watching series
- Being on Instagram
This example is cliché, but do you get the idea? If you express a series of hobbies like this, what do you think the recruiter might think? 🤔 Slacker.e, doesn't leave home, spends his/her life on screens... You could however have very good reasons to play video games if it allows you to train your logic and your ability to find solutions to complex problems, and to be present on Instagram to learn about current events or specific topics that interest you. So here's a way to present these types of hobbies more strategically:
- Daily monitoring of sports news on social networks (you don't even have to put "on social networks" you can clarify this information face to face during the job interview)
- Problem solving through video games
- Watching series and discussions during "Café Séries
➡️ Here is another example of hobbies that are not very selling or too poor to share anything about you and your personality:
- Seeing friends
We would like to say to you: "What else?" ... These are indeed human needs, common to all, which do not distinguish you. Luckily for you, you like to eat ;) ! As for laughing and seeing friends, that's a bit of a mouthful too. Maybe you could specify what you do to laugh more often, to enjoy the pleasure of "eating" and what you do when you are with your friends. For example:
- Go to one-man shows
- Play board games / Have debates with friends / Discover unusual places
- Discovering local restaurants
Interests to build a resume related to the position you are applying for
If you have a lot of interests or you don't know which ones to put on your resume, you can also select the ones that are most related to the skills required for the job you're applying for, or to the sector of activity of the position you're applying for. You may want to start by asking yourself what this or that experience brings you in terms of skills. For example, if you're applying for a communications job and you're into acting, singing, writing, martial arts, bowling, and walking, the hobbies most likely to speak to recruiters are "singing, acting and writing. Skills such as listening, the ability to express oneself, to write without spelling mistakes for example, that allow you to develop these 3 activities will indeed be privileged on a communication position. Of course, nothing prevents you from taking up martial arts, but ask yourself this question: "Why would the recruiter be interested in knowing this?
Moreover, if your interests bring you interesting skills and strong points for your professional project, you can also talk about them in more detail or even address certain achievements in your cover letter.
How to present your interests to make a success of your resume ?
As a classic resume is presented on a single page, you must be able to be concise!
👉Here is an example of a resume in pdf format, in which appear the centers of interests.
As for formatting you can create a specific section simply called "interests" in which you can list keywords, such as:
- 2 years of table tennis
- Reading about 30 science fiction books
- Surfing and surfing lessons given voluntarily
- Participatory workcamps
- Maintaining a neighborhood vegetable garden
Including some numbers, such as how long you've been practicing, can be useful to indicate how much the hobby is part of your personal life.
With a word processor like Microsoft Word, you can work on the layout of your resume and also use different fonts, including a special one to highlight your interests for example!
How to present these interests in a different way ?
Here we have talked to you about interests to create a classic resume but you can also try to be original when sending your application. Your interests can then be a very good tool to show originality and stand out from the crowd!
Are you passionate about cooking? Maybe you could send them your resume with some cakes?
Do you like origami? How about giving your resume an original shape?
Do you love playing video games? Maybe you could create a mini-game to learn more about yourself?
Are you into illustration or graphic design? Attach an animation or one of your creations to your application!
Do you sing in a choir? Why not try a singing resume?
Do you do video editing? You can try a video resume.
As you will have understood, your interests have allowed you to acquire skills that you can use to stand out from the rest of the application. So don't hesitate!
To go further
👉 How to write a student resume from A to Z ?
👉 Write a cover letter for an internship in 10 steps
👉 10 steps to prepare for a job interview
Pour passer à l'action
👉 Trouve un job aligné avec tes valeurs
👉 Découvre les formations pour t'orienter vers un métier à impact positif